The Cow - a year on (well almost!)

The cow – a year on – well almost! Here is an update on our cow Maali who has lived at GlenMyu Estate since December 2022. .

If you have read our previous article “We got a cow!”, then perhaps you will be interested in an update on how we have got on so far.

Maali is now part of the family

After my initial hesitation and worry about having a cow on the estate, Maali is now ensconced into our family at GlenMyu Estate. Maali is very comfortable living on the estate and her character has really developed since December 2022. 

All the other animals are used to Maali going about her business although the dogs still make a fuss when she comes back from her day grazing.

Some of the issue with the dogs have been brought about by Maali herself. We think that, as she is a herd animal, she really needs some company of her own.

I need a friend!

Her substitute for a friend appears to be chasing the dogs, chickens and ducks when she is let loose. Of course, this winds up the dogs who are happy to play. I must admit that I do laugh when some of our more recent puppies grab hold of her rope and pull it as Maali walks back towards her enclosure to see if any food has been left for her by the chickens.

Character building

She is a real character and quite determined in what she wants to do. 

Sometimes it takes a bit of encouragement to get her to do what you want. It’s as if she is a petulant child!

In the morning, Maali sometimes decides that she wants to be taken to a different part of the estate to graze. She stops dead and refuses to move!

It takes some effort to get her on her way again. Fortunately years playing rugby in the front row means that I have technique that can even move a bast of this tonnage. A tug of war ensues and after a while Maali realises that she is on the move.
I am trying to lose a bit of weight and perhaps in the future Maali will win this battle. But for now it’s an unexpected addition to my strength exercises when she decides to be stubborn!

The reaction from our guests.

Maali features in our Instagram, YouTube and Facebook photos and videos every so often. Many of our guests know about Maali before they come and are keen to meet her. We had two Indian Lawyers stay with us and as soon as they got out of the car they were looking for Maali. Several of our guests grew up in the country or on a family farm and like that there is cow on the estate. I guess that it brings back memories and is a comforting feeling.

We nearly lost her - twice!

Over the past ten months we have learned that we can’t allow Maali to roam free. Evidence of this is that we used to have a nice border of flowers and plants on the border of the lawn. Maali decided that this was a delicious buffet and therefore we no longer have beautiful flowers at the edge of the lawn!

We now tend to tie her in one area in the mornings so she can work on one particular area of grass and plants. Later on, once she is quite full, we release her to roam around the land (watching that she doesn’t eat any more flowers!).

One day my wife an I were in Colombo picking up some supplies for GlenMyu Estate and we received a phone call from a neighbour asking whether our cow was at the estate. We were confident that she was but decided to check with one of the staff. 

He was confident as well …..until he had a look at the area he thought she was. Of course, she wasn’t there and had escaped. 

Fortunately she was returned to us by our neighbour. 

How did she escape my Dear Watson?

We have fencing around GlenMyu Estate so we were perplexed on how Maali had escaped. It turned out that the gate that the staff use was left open and Maali found her escape!

Now the staff ensure that the gate is closed!

The second time was more scary

Maali started developing lumps on her skin and started losing weight. A home visit by the vet diagnosed the problem as “Lump Skin Disease”. The vet gave her an injection and told us that there was not medicine in Sri Lanka to treat the problem. However there was hope that may get through this and survive, but no guarantee.

We were extremely worried. A search on the internet didn’t help (which can often happen).

Fortunately we have some good friends that suggested that we try to treat Maali with a herbal remedy and they gave us the recipe to the potion.

Maali didn’t look great for several days and her appetite was low. Her favourite foods of Jackfruit and Bananas were of little or no interest. She was mainly kept indoors during this period as it was a colder and wetter part of the year and we needed to keep her warm. We continued with the medication over a few weeks and we were delighted to see that Maali started to want to eat again.

My wife and I had an important trip back to the UK when Maali was recovering and we were still unsure that she would make it. Daily updates were provided by Ruwanthi’s mother or the staff. She was continuing to make progress with the medication and the food that we brought in for her. 

Whilst we were away she had been showing that she wanted to go outside and start grazing again.

We returned to Sri Lanka in the later part of October and we were really pleased to see that Maali had put on a fair bit of weight. She had some open wounds, as a result of the disease which were continuously being treated

Relief

A few days after we returned Maali was let out to graze for part of the day.  She has put on weight and really looks so good compared to when we left for the UK.

Her character is coming back and she is now harassing the dogs again. Maali has not fully recovered however we have confidence that she will be back to her old self soon

Ready to meet guests again.

Maali is now accepting guests. Our most recent visitors have two delightful daughters who helped Ruwanthi feed Maali some bananas as soon as they got out of the car.

Being the petulant child, she of course didn’t eat them and I have no doubt that they will be saved for later for an evening snack without onlookers!

Visit GlenMyu Estate and meet Maali and her friends.

GlenMyu Estate is a boutique hotel located in five acres of the Sri Lankan countryside. We only have three bedrooms for guests and we are within an hours drive of many superb tourist sites. The tallest and second tallest Waterfalls in Sri Lanka are less than an hour away. Ella, the busy tourist town, is just over an hours drive and great for a day trip to see Nine Arch Bridge, Ella Rock, Ravana Falls and more. Our guests love to visit Horton Plains National Park and see the Tea gardens from Lipton’s Seat.

Where does the money go!

Your stay helps us pay for the maintenance of the estate, care for the animals and provide much needed employment for local people.

We are listed on booking.com and Airbnb where you can see our reviews and what our guests think of GlenMyu Estate.

For direct booking rates please contact us directly by pressing the WhatsApp button on our website.

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